When Andy Gibb sang 'White Christmas' in 1981 and it was sensational

21 December 2020, 17:20 | Updated: 21 December 2020, 21:30

The younger brother of Barry, Robin and Maurice Gibb would often sing with his siblings, but also had a successful singing career of his own. Pictured in New York in 1981
The younger brother of Barry, Robin and Maurice Gibb would often sing with his siblings, but also had a successful singing career of his own. Pictured in New York in 1981. Picture: YouTube

Andy Gibb singing 'White Christmas' as a tribute to Bing Crosby in 1981 is a rare piece of footage of the Gibb brother performing without the Bee Gees.

Andy Gibb was known as the 'other' Bee Gee.

The younger brother of Barry, Robin and Maurice Gibb would often sing with his siblings, but also had a successful singing career of his own.

See more: The greatest Bee Gees songs of all time, ranked

In a video from 1981, Andy Gibb can be seen wearing a tuxedo as he takes to the stage in New York and gives a short speech in tribute to Bing Crosby.

The 23-year-old star then dedicates his next song to Mr Crosby before the music starts and the Gibb brother sings a beautiful rendition of the legend's hit song, 'White Christmas'.

See more: Andy Gibb: Remembering the life and career of the Bee Gees' younger brother

In a video from 1981, Andy Gibb can be seen wearing a tuxedo as he takes to the stage in New York and gives a short speech in tribute to Bing Crosby.
In a video from 1981, Andy Gibb can be seen wearing a tuxedo as he takes to the stage in New York and gives a short speech in tribute to Bing Crosby. Picture: Youtube
The 23-year-old star then dedicates his next song to Mr Crosby before the music starts and the Gibb brother sings a beautiful rendition of the legend's hit song, 'White Christmas'.
The 23-year-old star then dedicates his next song to Mr Crosby before the music starts and the Gibb brother sings a beautiful rendition of the legend's hit song, 'White Christmas'. Picture: Youtube

See more: The day ABBA, Bee Gees, Olivia Newton-John, Rod Stewart and Andy Gibb sang a staggering medley

The video was filmed at an important time in Andy Gibb's life; he was on a verge of a break-up with the 'love of his life' Victoria Principal, with whom he had just released his last ever single, a version of The Everly Brothers' 'All I Have to Do Is Dream.'

Andy Gibb was also the host of music television show Solid Gold in 1981 and 1982 and performed in Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat on Broadway, but he was eventually sadly fired from both jobs due to his absenteeism.

The youngest Gibb brother fought a battle with drug addiction all of his life and would eventually succumb to it, dying from a heart attack caused by cocaine use when he was just 30-years-old.

See more: The Story of... 'White Christmas' by Bing Crosby

Broadway producer Zev Bruffman said of Andy's time as an actor: "When Andy was at the theater, he was a joy. But he wasn't there enough."

"We'd lose him over long weekends," he added. "He'd come back on Tuesday, and he'd look beat. He was like a little puppy—so ashamed when he did something wrong. He was all heart, but he didn't have enough muscle to carry through."

See more: Private studio footage of Barry Gibb and the Bee Gees recording 'Tragedy' is phenomenal

Despite his battle with drugs, Andy did see great success as a singer, scoring three number one singles in a row in the US:
Despite his battle with drugs, Andy did see great success as a singer, scoring three number one singles in a row in the US:. Picture: Youtube

See more: When Barry Gibb made rare appearance with wife Linda to sing 'Silent Night' with their kids on TV special

Despite his battle with drugs, Andy did see great success as a singer. He scored three number one singles in a row in the US: 'I Just Want to be Your Everything', '(Love is) Thicker than Water' and 'Shadow Dancing'.

He also had top 10 hits with 'An Everlasting Love', '(Our Love) Don't Throw it All Away' and 'Desire' however, he didn't have as much success in the UK: achieving one top 10 hit with 'An Everlasting Love'.

See more: Bee Gees: When Barry and Robin Gibb sang a flawless medley as Maurice tried to make them laugh

Over the next few years Andy would go twice to drug rehabilitation and in 1988 planned a come back and a record deal with Island Records.

But the deal was never signed, and despite the Bee Gees also announcing Andy Gibb would be officially joining their group as the fourth Bee Gee in 1988, Andy was still very torn up over his break-up with Victoria.

Robin Gibb would later say of Andy's state of mind in the spring of 1988 that he "just went downhill so fast... he was in a terrible state of depression."

See more: Bee Gees first TV gig: Teenage Barry Gibb and 10 year olds Robin and Maurice sing in 1960

Months before his death in 1988, the Bee Gees announced Andy Gibb would be officially joining their group as the fourth member of the group. (L to R) Robin, Maurice, Barry and Andy Gibb.
Months before his death in 1988, the Bee Gees announced Andy Gibb would be officially joining their group as the fourth member of the group. (L to R) Robin, Maurice, Barry and Andy Gibb. Picture: Getty

Just two days after celebrating his 30th birthday in London while working on his new album, Andy was admitted to hospital in Oxford where he complained of chest pains and died not long afterwards.

See more: The time Barry Gibb got his finger stuck in a bottle during a Bee Gees TV interview

After his death, his ex-wife Kim Reeder said: "I always knew that one day I'd get a call with news like this. It was only a matter of time." The Bee Gees made a statement to confirm Andy didn't die of a drug overdose – as it was widely reported – but from the side-effects of many years of drug use.

See more: Barry Gibb inviting Maurice's daughter on stage for duet of 'How Can You Mend a Broken Heart' is so moving

Andy Gibb is buried at Forest Lawn Memorial Park in Hollywood Hills, Los Angeles. The headstone reads 'Andy Gibb / March 5, 1958 – March 10, 1988 / An Everlasting Love'.

See more: QUIZ: How well do you know the Bee Gees' song lyrics?